“So, you are saying we buy an apartment block? Use a floor for an office for these guys and I manage a gallery and café on the ground floor? You are a country boy, are you sure you want to live in a city?” Will asks after Blue has laid out his plans.
“Yeah. I want freedom from community and the obligations and expectations. I want to live where no one knows my name except my friends.” Blue says.
“And you would do some cooking for the café but not anything too attention making?” Birch asks.
“You could hire me as a caterer for an opening at the gallery or when your game launches. I know that is a long way off, you might have investor events or something. But yes I’d like it to be just a coffee and cake place for people viewing the paintings.” Blue says.
“No offence, I am happy you want to include me, but how do I make any money?” Will says.
“You’ll get a percentage of art sales.” Birch says catching on.
“I know nothing of art. I enjoy our class but it is a hobby.” Will says.
“Hire some kids fresh out of art school, pay them something and put them on a bonus scheme. You’ll get used to what sells and what brings in the crowds.” Robin says.
“Fresh start for all of us. Somewhere new and fun.” Gervais says.
“I’m half in. I have work here and I love painting here. But you won’t need me all the time. I love the idea of a city apartment, I’ll need studio space.” Birch says.
“I don’t want to say yes. Not without a lot of thought. I love you guys but it doesn’t feel like something for me.” Will says honestly.
Blue’s face falls and he nods. Gervais watches Blue’s reaction intently.
“I guess I got carried away.” Blue says.
“Everyone did the same, planning to join you in a vineyard that you clearly don’t want. I love the idea that it is Gervais and my turn. I like my current job but I want to work for myself more. I love the apartment block idea, gives you guys an income anyway and a gallery and or coffeeshop would be good but it could be any business.” Robin says.
“I’m grateful you thought of me. I need to make my own way. I need to decide what I want to do.” Will says.
“You could still live with us.” Blue says.
“It’s months off. You’re still planning to stay here for the summer? So I have time to think and come up with a proposal for the space.” Will says.
“If there is such a space.” Robin says.
“I have been looking at places that fit.” Blue says.
“You are crazy. I love how you come up with these ideas.” Gervais smiles relieved that Will isn’t quite jumping at the chance to come. He’s clearly letting Blue down gently.
“We should tell Spence. What about Larry and Chris. Are you thinking of buying where Chris goes to school?” Robin asks.
“Spence has his summer camp dream. Chris and Larry will wind up here. Lets go where we want to. For the first time in forever I can and I want to explore and try things. Take a class, meet people, go dancing, have no fucking responsibilities.” Blue says.
“An apartment block is a huge fucking responsibility.” Will says.
“Sorry, it just seemed like a new adventure. Different to everything I’ve always done. And letting Gervais and Robin chase their dreams.” Blue says.
“It’s a good idea, just not for me.” Will says.
“Are you okay?” Spence asks Blue he following day after showing him around the gym.
“I messed up and I did what everyone does to me, to Will.” Blue says and explains the business and building idea.
“As usual I love the idea and I am happy to be a silent partner if needed. I’d back Robin or back whatever business you come up with. Maybe you should have a fitness gym and yoga studio. Will could manage and be a personal trainer if he wanted. And that would be flexible enough for him to go back to school or whatever he wants to do.” Spence says.
“I’d want a roof garden for yoga.” Blue grins.
“Like at school, your yoga by the pool was legendary.” Spence grins.
“I wonder if we can stretch to that. A rooftop pool and garden.” Blue says.
“With hot tubs. Lets make it happen. You and I will go in on the building together. Separate to the game company. I need somewhere to live and work on my camp idea. I like the idea of it being a building of small companies. So each floor having apartments and offices. Studios for artists. Everyone pays towards cleaning and receptionists and security.” Spence says.
“Your Wyatt might make a great super.” Blue says.
“l don’t know that we are long term but yes he might like that a lot in winter.” Spence says thoughtfully.
“And we’ll give Robin a loan.” Blue says.
“Yes. I’ve barely spent any of the beach house money. My trust covered everything, more than I needed really. Andy made enough to cover his needs. I bought the gym but that paid for itself too, Will’s success boosted enrolment and everything ticked over. I’m ready to put my energy in to new things. I know you are not yet, I’m okay with that. You just need to give your input, not do the leg work.” Spence says.
“There are lots of options for Will. He could be a partner too on our side. He’s so good at all that organizing, and with people. Do you think I am leading him on?” Blue asks.
“l think he is fully aware of the situation and I think he is happy to be your reserve right now. When he’s ready to move on he will. I think holding out hope for you is giving him a buffer right now. Are you certain Gervais is the right one? You and Will were incredible together and it is clear you both care very deeply for each other. I love Gervais and I love you together. I just remember what you and Will had, hell how jealous I was, you two lit up the room.” Spence asks.
“Gervais and I need to have our shot. I could never ask Will to wait. That would mean I don’t have faith in Gervais when I do. Honestly, I think Will deserves better than me, than who I have become. Gervais can deal with damaged, he is damaged and we are good together. Will is like a super hero. He’s so perfect. I used to be like that and now I’m not,” Blue says.
“l get you. I do. I think that is exactly why Gervais used to push you away. Maybe I need to change my mind on how you are treating Will. If you are doing to him, what Gervais did to you then you need to stop it. Gervais and Will deserve better than you and Jesse had.” Spence says.
“Oh hell, am I that bad? I suppose I am. Especially trying to run Will’s life for him. Thanks Spence. I’m so proud of you, how you’re pulling yourself through. And you still have time for us. You’re amazing.” Blue says.
“Don’t be too hard on yourself. And thanks. I am excited about this summer. A chance to train a bunch of high level kids. I am loving teaching at the school, just like Will is. Your idea has sparked loads of ideas for me and I am excited. You know how I love to have a home base. I miss my home more than I miss Andy. I hate that I realize how far my relationship had fallen. He isn’t solely to blame for the divorce.” Spence says.
“I know just how caught up in your work you can get. You two always had to pull each other up on it. If Andy told you he was unhappy, you would have made changes. You took him on a spontaneous vacation to Hawaii. Sure, it was to find me, but you did that for him more than you. You were already working on it. Give yourself credit for that.” Blue says.
“And he was jumping in to anyone else’s pants. Thanks Blue. I do tend to give Andy too much slack. He had things rough for sure but he had all of us. He had me, Robin and Jenna get him through high school and all of us in college. But we all had issues. We all had dramas and disappointments and we all grew up to be decent adults. Except him.” Spence says.
“Once the dust settles he will be devastated.” Blue says.
“Has he even called you once?” Spence asks.
“Not at all. Not asked Roe or Momma to ask me to call even.” Blue says sadly.
“Exactly. Can’t even man up and apologize to you in person for what happened in Hawaii.” Spence says.
“I’m clearly on your side.” Blue shrugs.
“I appreciate it. But I’d not be mad if you were friends with Andy again. I’d actually feel better, I mean it would mean the man I loved still existed. That I wasn’t duped like Will.” Spence says.
“Maybe it was you that changed. Wouldn’t stand for his shit.” Blue says.
“True.” Spence says.
“And you have Wyatt now, for however long, he’s hot and clearly adores you. You need that right now.” Blue says.
“He is amazing. I am really lucky.” Spence says.
“You seem happier.” Gervais says when Blue gets back.
“I want to apologize to you, I am not treating you well over Will. I’m yours, all yours. I shouldn’t have included him in my plan like a backup. I need to apologize to him too. I feel like I’m doing to you two what you did to me and Jesse.” Blue says.
“I don’t feel like you are. You’re not promising Will anything. You haven’t told him to fuck off, which I am okay with. I think you need the friendship.” Gervais says.
“I can find new friends.” Blue says.
“Blue, talk to him but don’t dump him out of your life on my account.” Gervais says feeling down that Blue still remembers his own bad behaviour so vividly and is affected by it.
“I’ll talk to him tomorrow. Have you heard from Ocean?” Blue asks.
“They can’t come until summer. I asked if we should go visit but he says he’s fine and busy.” Gervais says.
“We’d have done anything for a parental visit in college.” Blue says.
“Well he’s seen lots of me and Cheryl is his parent.” Gervais says.
“You know what I meant. I still get mad at my mom for not coming when I found my siblings.” Blue says.
“I get mad at my dad for never being there.” Gervais says.
“I get mad at him too.” Blue says and kisses Gervais. They make love gently and slowly, taking time to kiss and smile and enjoy each other.
Gervais lies awake after unsure how he feels. Should he be selfish and stay with Blue or set him free?